Thursday 01st September 2005

Rams devastated to lose Kent derby


Monday 29th
August 2005
Ryman League
Division One
Aaron Ayres reports from the Betterview Stadium
Tonbridge Angels 2 Huggins 1
Barnes 21
Ramsgate 1 Gregory 59

The Rams slipped to their first defeat of the season after conceding the opening goal inside 14 seconds, writes Aaron Ayres.

This match was no disaster though, for the Rams created plenty of chances and did the club proud.

Jim Ward's men were unashamedly more direct but when you've got strong forwards like Steffan Ball and Shaun Welford and are against one of the title favourites, Ramsgate owe nobody an explanation.

Ramsgate were rocked by the loss of defenders Dean Hill and Michael Cassar before kick-off but James Gregory, who has rejoined the club from Dover Athletic, came in and played a solid game. 

However, the visitors were caught cold from the kick-off as Leroy Huggins beat Danny Twyman.

Referee Belbin chose not to give the Rams what looked to be a blatant penalty from John Beales' handball on four minutes. But Angels were soon on the attack and Gregory cleared off the line from Brighton & Hove Albion youngster Lee Carey.

Boss Ward said Tonbridge would hold no fear for his side and he proved it by attacking the hosts. Warren Schulz, Edd Vahid and Mike Yianni set Welford up for a hat-trick of chances, but suddenly Ramsgate found themselves two goals down, on 21 minutes.

Carey and Ray Powell linked well to win a corner off Ball, taken by Nick Barnes. Warren Schulz cleared it but only as far as Barnes, whose return went in off the head of defender Liam Morris.

It was a cruel way to fall further behind but the Rams might have pulled at least one back before half-time. Yianni's lob went wide, Gregory's free-kick was tipped over by Mikele Czanna, Welford's shot was saved and Ball's header cleared the bar. And that still wasn't the end because Welford headed over again after a mazy run and cross by Ball.

The second period saw more agony for Welford in front of goal, while at the other end Ollie Schulz blocked Huggins' effort.

Ramsgate made a double substitution on 55 minutes, with Mark Munday and Shane Suter replacing Laslett and Stuart Vahid. 

Liam Morris' long throw found Ollie Schulz's head, but that went agonizing wide of the post after being deflected by a Tonbridge defender.

Ramsgate finally pulled a goal back on 59 minutes, when Yianni's corner saw Welford's shot blocked on the line, with Gregory steering home the rebound. 

Ward made a final substitution, taking off Steffan Ball and bringing on Graham Taylor on 69 minutes, as Ramsgate went on attacking mode again. Yianni - lucky to escape a card for a late challenge on Craig Roser - was involved as the Rams hunted the equaliser, starting the move that saw Suter's shot blocked, followed by a tame effort on the rebound.

The final ten minutes saw more Ramsgate pressure when an Edd Vahid cross failed to reach the stretching leg of Welford.  The Ashington-born striker continued to threaten but it was his challenge on Barnes that saw the Tonbridge man taken off with a dislocated shoulder, although a free-kick wasn't given. 

Speaking after the match, Ward said “We played them off the park; the boys are devastated not to come away with 3 points. We were better than them and we were more physical than them." 

"We gave away two silly goals early on - but we attacked Tonbridge most of the match, and their goalkeeper made two world class saves. The lads should hold their heads and be proud of their performance today - we have now got 6 points out of 9 and we will go forward and learn from this." said Ward

All in all the Rams' dominance and persistence entitled them to at least one point, following one of their best performances so far this season.

Ramsgate will be agt home to Whyteleafe in Ryman League Division One on Saturday September 3rd - Kick off 1pm.



Ramsgate: Twyman, E Vahid,  Gregory,  Morris, O Schulz,  Laslett ( Munday 55),  Yianni, W Schulz,  Welford, SBall (G Taylor 69s), S Vahid (Suter 55). Subs:S Pettit, Wild.

Attendance 394